Agenda and minutes

Policy Scrutiny Committee
Tuesday, 19th June 2018 6.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 1, City Hall

Contact: Claire Turner and Wendy Greenwell - 01522 873619  (01522 873387)

Items
No. Item

1.

Confirmation of Minutes - 20 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 97 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 20 March 2018 be confirmed.

2.

Declarations of Interest

Please note that, in accordance with the Members' Code of Conduct, when declaring interests members must disclose the existence and nature of the interest, and whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest (DPI) or personal and/or pecuniary.

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were received.

3.

Fair Trade Policy pdf icon PDF 187 KB

Minutes:

Heather Grover, Principal Policy Officer,

 

a.    presented the City of Lincoln Council Fairtrade Policy and Fairtrade Audit for information and comment.

 

b.    gave an overview of the background to the policy advising that a refresh was scheduled to take place in advance of the next Fairtrade City Status renewal in July 2018.

 

c.    advised that during April 2018 officers completed a desktop review of the policy and concluded that it remained accurate and reflective of the Fairtrade activities that the Council was currently undertaking and planned to undertake during the next 2 years. Therefore no amendments were made to the policy.

 

d.    referred to appendix b of the report and advised that the Council was required to undertake an internal audit of the Fairtrade products purchased and used by the City of Lincoln Council and its tenants.

 

e.    advised that the next audit would be undertaken ahead of the next Fairtrade accreditation renewal and in line with the next refresh of the Fairtrade Policy in 2020.

 

RESOLVED that the Fairtrade Policy and Audit be noted.

4.

People Strategy pdf icon PDF 70 KB

Minutes:

Claire Burroughs, HR and Work Based Learning Manager

 

a.    presented an update on the implementation of the People Strategy and action plan.

 

b.    gave an overview of the background to the report and advised that it was developed to support the delivery of the Councils Vision 2020 and the transformational journey to a “performance culture”

 

c.    referred to paragraph 4 of the report and highlighted the key achievements in relation to the following:

 

·         Appraisals and Staff Survey

·         Health and Wellbeing Strategy

·         Your Health Matters section on City People

·         Awarded the “Mindful Employer Status”

·         The Sickness Absence and Managing Stress Policies have been reviewed and updated.

·         Global Corporate Challenge

·         Staff Recognition Scheme and staff awards ceremony

·         Staff engagement activities were being developed

·         Staff engagement strategy, action plan and staff charter was being developed

 

d.    invited members questions and comments

 

Question – Did the staff survey responses concur with the feedback from the appraisals?

Response – The response rate from the staff survey had been disappointing, there were some positives highlighted and also some areas to improve on. The survey feedback could be circulated to members for information.

Question – Did the 86% of the appraisals completed include sickness levels?

Response – No it did not include sickness or maternity leave. The evidence suggested that 86% of appraisals completed was a good achievement for a new system.

Question – What affect had the policy had on long term sickness levels.

Response – It was too early to tell, stress had been the cause of the highest level of stress in the Authority, there were a number of actions that were being completed, it was hoped that these would have a positive impact.

 

RESOLVED that the actions to date in relation to the People Strategy be noted.

5.

Customer Experience Strategy Report pdf icon PDF 80 KB

Minutes:

Jo Crookes, Customer Services Manager

 

a.    presented an update on the progress and successes of the Customer Experience Strategy and the underlying Action Plan including key achievements to date.

 

b.    advised that the strategy reflected the core values and sought to deliver outcomes across six key strategic areas, three of which focussed on improvements to the overall customer journey and three of which focussed on transformational change and organisational efficiencies.

 

c.    referred to paragraph 4 of the report and highlighted the projects that had been delivered and the outcomes that had been achieved in the first year.

 

d.    highlighted the projects that were currently being worked on as detailed at paragraph 5 of the report.

 

e.    outlined the future projects which would be tackled in the next financial year as detailed at paragraph 6 of the report.

 

f.     invited members questions and comments

 

Question: What would happen if the computer systems went down?

Response: There was a business continuity plan in place.

Question: How could the e-billing service take up be improved?

Response:  A campaign would be held and an article placed in Your Lincoln to encourage as many people as possible to use e-billing.

Comment: Sometimes there was an issue with switchboard ringing out.

Response: This was a fault with the current system, the new telephone systems would correct the issue.

 

RESOLVED that the content of the report be noted.

 

 

6.

Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy for Lincolnshire pdf icon PDF 121 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman welcomed Lincolnshire County Councillor Eddie Poll, Chairman of the Joint Municipal Waste Partnership, Matthew Mitchell from Lincolnshire County Council and Councillor Faye Smith Portfolio Holder for Remarkable Place to the meeting.

 

Steve Bird, Assistant Director Communities and Street Scene introduced the draft Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy (JMWMS) document to provide members with an opportunity to comment so that Councillor Smith Portfolio Holder could take account of committee’s view in drafting the response on behalf of the City Council. 

 

Matthew Michell on behalf of the Lincolnshire Waste Partnership gave a power point presentation highlighting the following main points:

 

a.    the draft strategy set out how the eight local authorities in Lincolnshire and the Environment Agency would be working in partnership to deliver sustainable waste management services and deliver best value for money.

 

b.    the key strategic drivers were:

·         Increase in waste growth

·         Waste going in the wrong bin

·         EU Circular Economy Package

·         Brexit

·         25 Year Environment Plan

·         Defra Resources and Waste Strategy

·         Chinese Recycling Market

 

c.    the vision of the JMWMS was:

·         “To seek the best environmental option to provide innovative, customer-friendly waste management solutions that give value for money to Lincolnshire”

 

d.    the 10 key objectives of the JMWMS were:

 

1.            To improve the quality and therefore commercial value of our recycling stream.

2.            To consider moving towards a common set of recycling materials.

3.        To consider the introduction of separate food waste collections.

4.        To explore new opportunities of using all waste as a resource in accordance with the waste hierarchy.

5.        To contribute to the UK recycling target of 50% by 2020.

6.        To find the most appropriate ways to measure our environmental

7.        To seek to reduce our carbon footprint.

8.        To make an objective assessment of whether further residual waste recovery/disposal capacity is required and, if necessary, seek to secure appropriate capacity.

9.        To regularly review the LWP governance model in order to provide the best opportunity to bring closer integration and the implementation of the objectives set by the strategy.

10.      To consider appropriate innovative solutions in the delivery of our waste management services.

e. the draft strategy also included:

 

·         key legislation

·         an assessment of current services

·         themes for actions to achieve

·         the objectives

·         what happened beyond the adoption of the strategy.

 

f.     the draft strategy was currently out for consultation with:

·         elected Members

·          the wider public

·          parish councils

·         businesses

·         neighbouring authorities. 

 

f.     early consultation responses had been received with common themes being identified:

·         Researching alternative countries recycling effort.

·         Balancing economic and environmental benefits

·         Simplifying recycling to make it easier

·         Public needed better guidelines on what to recycle

 

g.    the draft strategy would be revised following feedback from the consultation process and this would then be considered for approval and adoption by each of the eight authorities the target timeframe was by the end of 2018.

 

h.    supporting  the strategy an action plan would be in place which would be reviewed annually.

 

The presentation was debated and the following issues were raised:  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Review of Mutual Exchange Policy pdf icon PDF 64 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Yvonne Fox, Assistant Director of Housing,

 

a.    presented a report to update Policy Scrutiny Committee with information relating to Mutual Exchange applications during 2017/2018.

 

b.    advised that in 2017 the Mutual Exchange Policy was amended to ensure that it complied with the provisions of the Housing Act 1985.

 

c.    advised on the grounds for refusal of a mutual exchange request as detailed at paragraph 3 of the report.

d.    highlighted the conditions that must be complied with before a mutual exchange could take place as detailed at paragraph 4 of the report.

 

e.    advised that throughout the last financial year, 61 applications were received for mutual exchanges. 5 of those were later withdrawn by one or both parties, 6 were currently being processed and of the remaining applications 3 had been refused.

 

 

RESOLVED that the outcomes of the Mutual Exchange Policy 2017/18 be noted.

8.

Business Rates Growth Policy pdf icon PDF 100 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Martin Walmsley, Head of Shared Revenues and Benefits

 

a.    presented the draft City of Lincoln Business Rates Growth Policy for comment.

 

b.    advised that the policy aimed to provide a time limited rate relief discount to new and extended business premises within the City, in the interest of building the Business Rates base, supporting economic growth and job creation.

 

c.    advised that eligibility for the proposed scheme would depend on the extent of the business premises, creation or extension, location and the impact of the new business or expansion plan would have on the local authority.

 

d.    referred to paragraph 3 of the report and advised on the background to the report advising that North Kesteven District Council and West Lindsey District Council had also approved a Business Rates Growth Policy.

 

e.    summarised the proposed eligibility criteria for the rate relief as detailed at paragraph 4.1 of report.

 

f.     advised that for growth businesses an initial ‘audit of suitability’ would be undertaken before any formal invitation to apply for relief was issued to the business.

 

g.    advised that applications would be scored by an Officer board and gave an overview of the scoring criteria as detailed at paragraph 4.6 of the report.

 

h.    invited members questions and comments.

 

 

Comment: Members supported the principles and initiatives of the scheme and suggested that a commitment to the social responsibility charter and the living wage be included within the eligibility criteria.

Response: It would be difficult to make the living wage a mandatory requirement and suggested that a commitment towards signing up to the Social Responsibility Charter as oppose to it being mandatory be included within the eligibility criteria.

Question: Did any other areas have a similar scheme in place and how would this attract businesses to the City.

Response: There were similar schemes in other areas, it would not be the tipping point for attracting businesses to the city but would be part of a package.

Question: Referred to the eligibility criteria number 3 and asked how wouldsmall and medium size businesses meet the criteria if they only employed 1 or 2 people?

Response: The expected growth in jobs would be worked out as percentage to ensure it was fair across all sized businesses.

 

RESOLVED that

 

1.    the draft Business Rates Growth Policy be supported.

 

2.    the following addition to the Business Rates Growth Policy eligibility criteria be considered.

 

                                      i.        A commitment towards signing up to the Social Responsibility Charter.

9.

Review of Fraud and Sanction Policy pdf icon PDF 67 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Martin Walmsley, Head of Shared Revenues and Benefits

 

a.    presented a small number of amendments to the Fraud Sanction Policy in respect of the shared Revenues and Benefits service between City of Lincoln Council and North Kesteven District Council.

 

b.    gave an overview of the background to the report as detailed at paragraph 2 and advised that the final revised policy would be considered by Executive on 23rd July 2018.

 

c.    referred to Appendix 1 of the report and highlighted the proposed amendments to the Fraud Sanction Policy.

 

RESOLVED that the amendments to the Fraud Sanctions Policy be supported.

10.

Policy Scrutiny Work Programme 2018-19 and Executive Work Programme Update pdf icon PDF 46 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Democratic Services Officer:

 

a.    presented the report ‘Policy Scrutiny Work Programme 2018-19 and Executive Work Programme Update’.

 

b.    presented the Executive Work Programme June 2018 – May 2019.

 

c.    requested councillors to submit what items they wished to scrutinise from the Executive Work Programme and policies of interest.

 

d.    invited members questions and comments.

 

Members made no further comments or suggestions regarding the Policy Scrutiny work programme.

  

RESOLVED that:

 

1.    the work Policy Scrutiny work programme be noted.

 

2.    the Executive work programme be noted.

11.

Health Scrutiny Update

Minutes:

The Chair of Policy Scrutiny Committee updated members of the business that had been discussed at the Health Scrutiny meeting held on 16 May 2018, these were:

 

·         Children and Young Persons Service at United Lincolnshire Hospital NHS Trust – Risk to the Safety of the Service

·         Patient Access to Primary Care- Lincoln Area

·         Winter Resilience Review 2017/18

 

RESOLVED that the report be noted.